New version 5.4

Expo and React Native for mobile, Blockly for the backend.

New version 5.4

Another pivotal moment for the platform as we decided to drop support for Flutter and focus entirely on the React ecosystem.

Features for the frontend

Starting from this version Flutter is replaced with Expo 45 and React Native 0.68. Our decision was based on the following points:

  • Flutter has its own philosophy in terms of layouting out screens and writing logic (Dart instead of Javascript) that feels awkward for people familiar with web technologies (HTML, etc).
  • React Native is based on React and uses the same reactivity and data-binding mechanisms. That makes it much easier to share logic between web and mobile.
  • Flutter is no more faster than React Native as the latter has made significand progress in improving performance plus a roadmap to become even faster.

Expo in particular, provides:

  • a curated set of components (maintained by Expo) to avoid the problem of eventually unsupported open-source components. By the way, Flutter also suffers from that.
  • a proven build Service
  • Expo Go to reduce the code-to-device time.

This version also:

  • includes deeper support for Next.js 12
  • upgrades to the new and very promising React 18.

Features for the backend

Blockly is now the primary language for developing backends based on Next.js including more support for its features. Javascript remains an option for special integrations.

Faster builds

Our platform is about productivity so we continuously optimize the build process especially for mobile apps so that users can preview them as fast as possible after a sequence of changes. No complex mobile apps can be built and published to Expo Go in a minute, while web apps builds take less than 20 sec!

Overall use experience improvements

We always listen to users and do our best to improve the user experience from just fixing bugs to reducing clicks to making things faster to simplifying the process.

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